tribunal will be judged according to the International Crime Act
"Strange world, you have made me a stranger to your ways"
the topic of discussion for the last few days has unfortunately
been someone who is a recognized war-criminal, someone who has lost
his Bangladeshi citizenship, the right to practice politics in this
country, whose name is absent from the list of voters, who has been
disenfranchised by the polity and who has forfeited all individual
rights in this land. I do not have the words to protest or criticize
the act of those who, so many years after the liberation war, have
lifted one ponderous tome after another to advocate for an individual
who has long been recognized as a war criminal and has long lost
his right to practice politics. I can only quote the poet Shukanto
and say "oh strange world, you have made me a stranger to your ways."
We have been shocked, dumbstruck, hurt and pained. I wonder whether
we actually are living in a free Bangladesh or whether the free
Bangladesh has become the guise for an unfamiliar nation. Such queries
plague my mind today.
There is much to say today, Honorable Speaker. However, to speak
against such blatant advocacy for evil makes my own words seem frivolous.
We are witnessing a shameful endeavor to defend a war-criminal.
There is a saying "a little grief enervates, much grief makes one
strong." My condition is similar. For today I see, standing in this
parliament a party like the Jamaat, that was against the birth of
this nation, fighting for their leader Golam Azam, who was a war
criminal and I see another party, whose founder was himself a freedom
fighter, soliciting for Golam Azam. When I look at the latter group,
I see faces of those who have lost brothers, fathers and husbands
in the war. When I see them rise in defence of a war criminal, I
have no alternative but to choke my own emotions, to strengthen
myself, Honorable Speaker.
Razakars were part of the Pakistani Forces:
You wanted to know whether the Razakars and Al-Badrs were an auxiliary
force of the Pakistan armed forces. This query was raised yesterday.
And listening to the comments of some of our barristers I got confused
as to whether we were in the Parliament or the High Court.
I personally bear witness to the fact that the Razakars were an
auxiliary force. This is because, in 1971, me, my mother, my husband,
my aunts and uncles, my sister and my brothers, we were all prisoners
of the Pakistan Army. During this time, my son was born in the Medical
College. When we were held captive at a house on Road-18 in Dhanmondi,
a militia of the Pakistani army used to stand guard outside our
house. They had machine guns fixed to the roof and made bunkers
around the house while the war was being fought. At one point we
saw that the militia, which hailed from the Beluchistan regime,
being removed and a group of armed Razakars started guarding us
along with members of the Pakistani army. The rationed food from
the army was meant for the Razakars as well. They were recognized
as a part of the Pakistani forces and I feel that there cannot be
any stronger evidence regarding their affiliation to the Pakistan
I am drawing your attention to a gazette notification.
The gazette was:
1. The Gazette of Pakistan Extraordinary Published by Authority
Islamabad, Tuesday, September 7, 1971.
Government of Pakistan
Cabinet Secretariat (Cabinet Division)
Rawalpindi, the 4th September, 1971
No. 103/22/71-Min-Dr. Abdul Motaleb Malik, HQA, assumed charge of
the office of Governor of the Province of East Pakistan on and from
the afternoon of the 3rd September, 1971
Ghulam Ishaq Khan, HQA,S.PK.CSP
2. Ministry of Defence
Rawalpindi, the 7th September, 1971
Government of Pakistan
No. 4852/543/PS-IA/3659/D-2A-In exercise of the powers conferred
by subsection (1) and sub-section (3) of Section 5 of the Pakistan
Army Act, 1952 (Act No. XXXIX of 1952) the Central Government is
pleased to direct that -
(a) all the provisions of the said Act shall, so far as may be,
apply to the Razakars raised under the East Pakistan Razakars Ordinance,
1971 (East Pakistan Ordinance No. X of 1971);
(b) the officer of the Pakistan Army under whose command any member
of the Razakars is placed shall exercise the same powers in relation
to that member as he is authorized to exercise under the said Act
in relation to a member of the Pakistan Army placed under his command.
I do not think that any further proof is necessary regarding the
status of the Razakars during the war. A certificate of declaration
prepared for in-training Razakars and directed to the Pakistani army officer, was earlier produced by Md. Nasim. I do not think the particulars of the certificate need to be re-iterated today.
However, I do want to direct your attention to the fact that both the Al-Badrs and the Razakars are mentioned in the certificate.
"Sources reports that Pak. Army has organised and formed Razakar
Bahini in East Pakistan.